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Can we be good without God?

- We are posing in a provocative way the meta-ethical question of the objectivity of moral values o Social convention (human convention) Why act morally if conflict with self-interest? Are we accountable of our moral decisions and actions? o Personal preference o Valid independently of our apprehension (question of foundation) 2 points: - God exists o Objectivity of moral values, moral duties, moral accountability is secured o Believing that moral values and duties are objective provides moral grounds for believing in God o Objective moral values exist = something is right or wrong independently of whether anybody believes it to be so (in reality it is bad, even if he thinks it is good and made people believe they are good) o Objective moral values rooted in God = Gods own Holy and perfect good nature = supplies the absolute standard against which all actions and decisions are measured o Gods moral nature = expressed in relation to us in the form of divine commands o Divine commands = constitute moral duties and obligations = flow from his moral nature o God holds all persons morally accountable for actions = punish evil and wrong = vindicate the righteous = good ultimately triumph over evil = see we live in a moral universe o Accountability = moral choices are infused with eternal significant = decisions are not empty and ultimately meaningless gestures = moral lives have paramount significance - God does not exist o Morality is just human convention = Morality is wholly subjective and non-binding o Actions no longer count as good or evil since objective moral values dont exist so we cant be truly good (cant determine if good or evil) o No objective moral values = what is foundation for moral values? = what is the basis for the value of human beings? = who imposes any moral duties upon us? = why think we have moral obligations? o Morality = biological worth = biological adaptation no less than are hands and feet and teeth = aid to survival and reproduction o GENERATION NOW = repudiate idea of lawgiver but retain the ideas of moral right and wrong. Casting God aside = abolished conditions of meaningfulness for moral right and wrong as well. Discoure upon moral right and wrong and obligation w/o reference to religion = discourse w/o meaning o Moreal principlies that govern behavior are rooted in habit, custom, feeling and fashion, non-conformist = unfashionable NOT the Question:

1) Must we believe in God in order to live moral lives? Both atheist and theist will live the same way if they dont 2) Can we formulate a system of ethics w/o reference to God? Atheist recognize 3) Can we recognize the existence of objective moral values w/o reference to God? (need not believe in God in order to recognize that we should love our children) objective worthlessness of human beings: o materialism (materialists or physicalists) man = purely animal organism, no immaterial aspect to his being like soul or mind || human morality as objective is to fall into the trap of specie-ism. || if no mind distinct from the brand, then everything we think and do is determined by the input of our five senses and genetic make-up o determinism Naturalism is true = no good and evil = no right and wrong = no objective moral values = doesnt matter what values you choose No moral accountability = even if there were objective moral values and duties, it is irrelevant because there is no accountability

Objective moral values do exist = very obvious = God exist Moral obligation: what makes certain actions right or wrong for us || what or who imposes moral duties upon us? || why is it that we ought to do certain things and ought not to do the other || - moral obligations were thought to be laid upon by Gods moral commands. - Deny Gods existence = difficult to make sense of moral duty or right and wrong - Duty = something that is owed to someone || imposed by God - Moral obligation = necessitates Gods existence God does not exist = no moral accountability = demoralizing (deterioration of moral motivation) because we moral choices are insignificant = both fate and that of the universe will be the same regardless of what we do Demoralize: hard to do the right thing = sacrifice self-interest and resist to do wrong , but if ultimately it does not matter what you choose or do = undermine ones moral life and sap ones moral strength Strengthen moral life = belief that one will be held accountable for ones actions and that ones choices do make a difference in bringing the good